Casey, Mr. Fancypants, is lame, which in the horse world mean he’s having trouble bearing weight on one of his legs – right front, to be specific. So he walks with a limp.
The problem, which all horse owners can attest to, is that there are a million-ish reasons why a horse might be lame. In this case, I rode him in a lesson on a Friday afternoon and he was fine (I have the video to prove it). I then put him in the wash stall to hose him down and he walked out of the wash stall limping. Over the next 15 minutes it went from bad to worse.
He spent the night in a stall. And the next night. And the next. The vet came out on Monday and we talked over the possibilities: 1) abscess*; 2) shoes (he had recently changed shoe types); 3) deep bruising in his hoof. Thankfully the vet did not think it was further up like a shoulder injury. Abscesses are fairly common, but he also didn’t think that was the primary cause. So the decision was made to put him in the shoes he had been wearing before he went lame. You know… if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it? Well, Mr. Fancypants wears Gucci, so we had made an attempt to see if he would find Hush Puppies acceptable. Apparently not. Back to Gucci we go.
Farrier came out and put bar shoes back on, with pour-ins and floated heels. We’ve been dealing with quarter-cracks. Non-horse people, don’t worry about the details. They are not important to the story. It’s a shit-ton of money though. Non-horse people, please do not assume horse owners are rich. We just have our financial priorities screwed up. I mean, my kids are probably going to be supporting us in our twilight years. But my horses have the best life possible. They get more massages than I do, for crying out loud.
So farrier puts the new fancy shoes on and we turn him out. He proceeds to FLY out to his friends whom he hasn’t seen in a week, bucking and kicking the whole way. He came in lame at the end of the day, thanks to those shenanigans.
Point of this story is that 1) I wish he could have just TOLD me he didn’t like the Hush Puppies; and 2) I wish I could have told him not to act like a lunatic.
*A hoof abscess can be defined as a localized accumulation of purulent exudates located between the germinal and keratinized layers of the epithelium, most commonly subsolar or submural. (http://www.equipodiatry.com/article_hoof_abscess.htm)
In simpler terms, it’s a small infection inside the hoof. The infection is trapped and causes a great deal of pain until the infected area works his way out of the hoof. And now you know.